The life many people choose to lead is one of chasing rainbows, thinking they’re going to find a pot of gold.
They go after lotteries, casinos, good luck charms and get-rich-quick schemes. When I served as pastor of Mount Hope Church in Lansing, 70 percent of the prayer requests I got every week pertained to financial problems. You wouldn’t believe what people say.
- “Pray that I’ll be able to refinance my house so I can pay off my credit cards.”
- “Pray that the bank will approve our new home equity line of credit.”
- “Pray that I’ll get financing for my new car.”
- “Pray that I’ll have enough income so I can start tithing.”
It’s painfully clear that even many of God’s people don’t know how to handle money.
Deuteronomy 8:18 says:
But thou shalt remember the LORD thy God: for it is he that giveth thee power to get wealth, that he may establish his covenant …
God is not careless in what He says. He means every word. He said plainly He has given you and me the power to get wealth. Ephesians 3:20 confirms this:
Unto him, who is able to do exceedingly abundant above all that we could ask or think according to the power that worketh in us.
God has given His children the power—not the skill or talent, necessarily, but the power — to get wealth, and the amount of wealth we enjoy in this life will be according to our management of the wealth He entrusts to us now.
Jesus told a parable in Matthew 25 about talents. He wasn’t talking about the talent to play the trumpet, or preach or sing. He was talking about money. He gave one man five talents, another man two talents, and another man one talent. You might as well say He gave $5,000, $2,000 and $1,000. It ultimately belonged to Him. They were like junior investors working with the firm’s money.
It’s critical to understand that nothing we have belongs to us; we’re just managers. We’re managing what God has entrusted to us. If you get greedy or think it all revolves around you, you’ll find yourself going down to the lower floors on that elevator, and maybe even the musty-smelling sub-basement.
The man with $5,000 invested it and turned it into $10,000. The man with $2,000 also doubled his investment to $4,000. But the $1,000 investor had a different attitude—doomed by fear—and decided to play it safe.
He buried it, so it was “safe” in his backyard. The Lord came back to find out what they had done.
To the first two, He said, “Well done thy good and faithful servant. You’ve been faithful over a little; now I’m going to give you charge over much.” They’d managed the money well and passed the test.
They didn’t fall into the traps many Christians today fall into where money leaks out and disappears because of poor decisions. Because of their wise management, the master took them up to the concierge level, so-to-speak, and gave them more.
Then He came to the one who’d buried the money, and this guy made excuses like people with a scarcity mentality always do. He said, “I knew you were a hard taskmaster, so I didn’t want to take a risk on Wall Street. Here’s the thousand dollars you gave me.”
The Lord looked at him and said, “You lazy and wicked servant! You didn’t reproduce money with the money I entrusted to you, therefore, I’m taking it from you, and I’m giving it to the other guys.” (I’ve paraphrased this whole exchange; see Matthew 25 for the story.)
A Law of the Kingdom
This strikes many people as unfair. The other guys didn’t need it, right? Right.
But this is a law of the kingdom: Money doesn’t go to people who need it. It goes to those who manage it properly for the King.
You MUST understand this principle if you want to come into the wealthy place.